- Feb 8, 2010
The extra-solar planet count is more than 400 and rising. Before long we may find an Earth-like planet around another star. If we do, and can visit, what next? Stake out our claim on an alien world or tread lightly and preserve it? We´ll look at what our record on Earth says about our planet stewardship. Also, whether a massive technological fix can get us out of our climate mess. Plus, what we can learn about extreme climate from our neighbors in the solar system, Venus and Mars.
- May 5, 2009
In Astrobiology Magazines latest podcast, our host Simon Mitton describes planetary simulations being carried out at the Center for Space and Planetary Science at the University of Arkansas, and interviews Mack Ivey, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences. Ivey discusses his research on terrestrial extremophile bacteria, and explains how these studies can help in the search for life on Mars.
- Apr 4, 2009
In Astrobiology Magazine latest podcast, our host Simon Mitton interviews Rick Ulrich, Professor in the department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Arkansas and deputy director of the Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences. Ulrich discusses how thermal modeling of Mars is being used to create temperature maps of the planet. With these maps, astrobiologists and planners of future missions could pick out the places where life may possibly exist in the subsurface.
- Jan 12, 2009
Astrobiology Magazine presents its latest podcast with our host Simon Mitton. In this interview, Brian Jackson, a NASA Earth and Space Sciences Fellow in the Department of Planetary Sciences at the University of Arizona, explores the importance of tidal heating in determining the habitability of planets. Tidal heating, which is generated by orbiting a massive gravitational body like a star or giant planet, can heat up a planet or moon. If there is too much tidal heating, though, the resulting volcanism can create torrid conditions unsuitable for life.
- Dec 22, 2008
Astrobiology Magazine presents its latest podcast with our host Simon Mitton. In this interview, Tim Livengood of the Universities Space Research Association and Vikki Meadows of the University of Washington in Seattle describe how the EPOXI mission developed from NASA´s Deep Impact mission. The Deep Impact spacecraft, having successfully delivered an impact probe to the comet Tempel 1, now will be used to search for Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars. The spacecraft also has been used to observe Earth from a distance, helping scientists understand how gases in the atmosphere can indicate whether distant worlds contain life.
- Dec 12, 2008
Astrobiology Magazine presents a new podcast with our host Simon Mitton. In this interview, Beda Hofmann, an astrobiologist at the Natural History Museum in Bern, Switzerland, explores the links between meteorites, asteroids, and astrobiology. Europe’s proposed Marco Polo Mission would land on an asteroid, drill down for samples, and return them to Earth. As Hofmann explains, the samples will be older than any rocks on Earth, and may contain important clues on the formation of the solar system.
- Aug 18, 2008
Host Simon Mitton interviews Axel Brandenburg, an astrobiologist at the NORDITA research facility at Stockholm in Sweden. In this interview, Brandenburg considers why terrestrial life is based on molecules that have a left-handed symmetry, when their mirror images should work just as well. He considers the intriguing question: could life be right handed, at the molecular level, elsewhere in the solar system?
- Dec 17, 2007
Join us for Astrobiology Magazine´s latest podcast: "Naked Astrobiology" with our host Simon Mitton, and the second part of his interview with Pascale Ehrenfreund, an astrochemist at Leiden University in the Netherlands. In this segment, Ehrenfreund discusses the chemistry of newly forming planets, how we examine the exoplanets that have been discovered in other solar systems, and what we still need to learn to complete our understanding of planetary evolution.
- Dec 10, 2007
Join us for Astrobiology Magazine´s latest podcast: "Naked Astrobiology" with our host Simon Mitton. In this interview with Pascale Ehrenfreund of Leiden University in the Netherlands, she describes her studies of meteorites, comets, and the organic chemistry of space. By learning about the evolution of solar systems and tracking the molecules that are necessary for life, scientists such as Ehrenfreund hope to learn more about the origin of life on our own planet and the possibility for life on other worlds.
- May 17, 2007
Join us for Astrobiology Magazine’s latest podcast: “Naked Astrobiology” with our host Simon Mitton. In this broadcast Mitton interviews Frances Westall of the Centre de Biophysique Moleculaire in Orleans, France. They discuss her search for the earliest traces of life in the Earth’s most ancient rocks, and how fossilized microbial mats provide a vast amount of information about life’s slimy beginnings.
This is the second part of Simon Mitton´s interview with Simon Conway Morris, a paleontologist renowned for his insights into early evolution. They discuss the development of life and how manipulation of the environment eventually leads to advanced technology. As outlined in his newest book, "Life´s Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe," Conway Morris says human-like forms could be a common result of evolution as life on a planet becomes increasingly complex.
In Simon Mitton´s interview with Simon Conway Morris, a paleontologist renowned for his insights into early evolution, they discuss the role convergent evolution has played in the complexity of life. As outlined in his newest book, "Life´s Solution: Inevitable Humans in a Lonely Universe," Conway Morris says there may be a limited number of forms and solutions available in the universe to achieve the chemical and biological needs of life.
- Apr 13, 2006
Our host Simon Mitton conducts an in-depth interview with David Southwood, Director of Science for the European Space Agency. In this segment of the interview, Southwood reveals Europe’s plans for exploring the universe and expanding our knowledge of astrobiology.
- Mar 27, 2006
In Part I of an in-depth interview with the Director of Science for the European Space Agency, our host Simon Mitton discusses astrobiology and its exploration frontiers.